Fish Discus: maintenance, care, breeding
There are many that look quite impressive in an aquarium, however, not everyone is as majestic as a discus, belonging to the cichlid family. They attract aquarists with their elegance, brightness, variety of colors, original form and peaceful character. But unfortunately, the fish are not only very beautiful, but also quite capricious and demanding to the conditions of detention. Therefore, for the content of discus in an aquarium, and even more so for breeding, mostly real professionals are taken. But this does not mean that a beginner aquarist will not be able to cope with this kind of freshwater. The main thing is to have the desire and knowledge.
Discussions in nature
The birthplace of fish is considered to be South America (Colombia, Peru, Brazil, Venezuela). Representatives of the cichlid family like running water with a lot of semi-submerged trees and snags.
Types of discus
Fish were brought to Europe in 30-40 years. Initially, only one species was known - the Heckel Discus (red).In the first half of the 20th century, another was discovered - green, which lived in the central Amazon (Putumayo River in Peru, Lake Tefe in Brazil). In the second half of the 60s, brown and blue discus were discovered. All of these fish are natural species.
In addition, in the 90s new hybrid and selection forms began to appear, which are currently more popular than natural ones, even though they are more prone to diseases and require careful maintenance.
There are 5 main groups of discus:
- RedThe main body color is between orange, red and cherry tinge. The discussions of this group are very bright, and therefore they can be easily sold. But to maintain color, they need food with special additives.
- Cobalt. A distinctive feature of these fish is the presence on the body and fins of spangles and shiny stripes. They are similar in color to turquoise, but, unlike them, have more blueness than greenery.
- Turquoise. The main shade of the body of fish - turquoise. May have streaks or spots.
- Pigeon blood. Differ yellowish-pink, as if dusty body color.
- Golden.Treat the most expensive small fishes from all 5 groups. Particularly valuable individuals having a pure golden color without a dark pigment.
Appearance of discus
The body of the fish is flat and round, strongly compressed from the sides, due to which it is similar to a disk (hence the name). Discus can grow to a rather large size (15-25 cm).
Color can be very diverse, and its intensity depends on the conditions of detention. The better the lighting, the background and the ground are chosen, the more the brightness and richness of the colors are revealed.
Content discus with other fish
As practice has shown, the discus fish quickly take root in a new aquarium (if all the necessary parameters of water and other components of the domestic water world are observed).
Discussions, the maintenance of which, as a rule, gives a lot of trouble, friendly and peaceful in relation to other fish. They do not belong to predators and do not tear the ground. Poor tolerate loneliness, keep flocks.
Cichlids eat slowly, live in excessively warm water for other fish, and are highly susceptible to disease, which creates certain problems with the selection of neighbors. Keep them from other aquatic inhabitants better separately.But if you still need to choose your neighbors, then the most suitable ones are red neon, red-bearing tetra, clown combat, congo and some soma.
Discuss: content and breeding
It is believed that discus is a fish for beginners, as it is rather difficult to create optimal conditions for them, and it is even more difficult to get offspring. What are the most common difficulties?
- Acclimatization. Discussions, both adults and young, are subject to stress, and moving to another place of residence is very exciting for them.
- Disease. These fish are very susceptible to them. The slightest lack of care and stress immediately undermine their health.
Problems with feeding, health, ensuring the right temperature should be considered in advance. You should buy a large aquarium, high-quality food and filter, and most importantly - be patient.
Creating optimal conditions
Discus, the content and care of which we describe, is a very picky fish that requires certain knowledge.
1. This is gregarious fish. They are inhabited in small groups of 6 individuals. Due to the considerable size of the fish, the aquarium should be large enough (tall and long, at least 40 cm wide) - at least 200 liters for a couple.It is better if it is separate, as it will need a higher temperature than other fish. In addition, diseases that are not dangerous for other inhabitants of the aquarium can be fatal for discus.
2 It is better to place the aquarium in a quiet place, exclude loud noises, knock, sharp movements. The main condition for the discus fish is its content in pure water. Be sure to install a good water filter, regularly clean the soil in the aquarium and change half the water once a week. It should be slightly acidic and soft. The optimum temperature is 28-33 ° C.
3. Ground in the aquarium may not be at all. If you plan to plant algae and plants, then any soil can be suitable.
4. May also not be plants. But in any case it is better if they are not many. It is recommended to choose those that withstand the high temperature of the water and serve as natural filters. These plants include Anubias, Vallisneria, Echinodorus, etc.
5. Discus - fish, the content of which can be carried out with a little light.
6. Filtration of water in the aquarium is required. You can use both internal and external.
7Ozone treatment can be used to remove water from microorganisms. This method is quite effective, but is only suitable for experienced aquarists, as an overdose of ozone can kill fish. A cheaper, safer and simpler alternative to ozonation is ultraviolet.
There are also high-tech methods of keeping such fish:
- various complex filters;
- devices for control and regulation of water and so on.
But such equipment is expensive, and not all of it is available.
What to feed?
The type of discus fish, the maintenance of which requires a lot of effort, is very capricious and demanding in relation to food. They do not eat bloodworms, pipe makers and artemia. They need live food, food with vitamins and special stuffing. Food is given 2-3 times a day.
It must be remembered that a live bloodworm and a pipeker can cause diseases or lead to poisoning.
Fish discus fish does not take fortified dry food right away, it needs to be taught to them gradually. During the 1st and 2nd weeks, they are gradually added to the ground beef heart, gradually increasing the dose. With the introduction of new food fish should be completely healthy.
In addition, the discus, the content of which we describe, can obtain vitamins by plucking limnofily, cabomba, hygrophilic or other plants with soft leaves, which are sometimes placed in an aquarium.
These members of the cichlid family have implicit sex differences that appear only during the spawning period. The male has thicker lips and a steep forehead.
As they grow up, the discus breaks into pairs. They are separately deposited in spawning. Females lay eggs on wide leaves of plants or a previously purified substrate. From it comes up to 200-300 fry, which are fed at first by skin secretion from the sides of their parents. There are cases when this mucus becomes small. Then there is a conflict between adult fish for the right to feed them, as a result of which the fry can be eaten. In order to protect them, they put nets that allow the fry to swim, and adult fish are not allowed to eat them.
Grown up fish are deposited. They are fed with egg yolk and artemia. The main conditions in the care of fry are regular feeding for even growth and timely water change.
It should be remembered that feeding a pipe maker can impair the reproductive health of these fish.
Discussions, the conditions of which should be good enough, may have the following main ailments:
- Gill worms-flukes. The main symptoms include: fear and anxiety of the discus, the gills begin to swell and stick or, conversely, protrude. The fish begins to choke. Treatment - for several days, formalin baths or a special All-natural melafix product, which is given in pet stores. Effective in the fight against this disease ampulyaria, eating eggs of worms.
- Skin worms-flukes. Symptoms are anxiety, swaying in different directions, in some areas the skin becomes dull with a bluish or gray tinge, the fish stop eating food, the skin on the fins collapse, and sores appear on the body. The method of treatment is the same as in the first case.
- Bowel disease. Discus can become infected by sick fish or through poor-quality feed. The main symptoms: feces have the appearance of white transparent threads, lethargy fish, lack of appetite, darkening of color, decomposition of the edges of the fins. Purulent ulcers or holes may appear on the head.The diagnosis can be confirmed only after conducting a laboratory study. The treatment is produced by metronidazole.
- Bacterial infections. In a diseased fish, the color darkens, the fins are tightened, the mucous membrane thickens, the edges of the fins whiten. Discus gets into a corner and stops eating. If you do not begin to heal in a timely manner, the mucous will peel off, the eyes will become cloudy, the fins and tail will decompose. The fish will roll on its side. Used for the treatment of antibiotics: "Tsifran" with "Furazolidone", "Ciprofloxacin".
- Dropsy and intestinal obstruction. These diseases are quite difficult to distinguish. In both cases, the abdominal cavity is swollen; only with intestinal obstruction, the fish continue to eat food until the intestines rupture, and the fish will die quickly. When dropsy discus refuses to eat. Symptoms such as pucheglazii, change of excrement (they become mucous-white) may appear. The cause of intestinal obstruction is poor and monotonous food, and dropsy is poor quality food and poor conditions.
It is possible to prevent the occurrence of diseases in a discus fish, the content of which is not such an overwhelming matter, if:
- create and maintain optimal conditions for keeping in the aquarium (temperature and purity of water, good nutrition, etc.);
- try not to overpower the aquarium;
- eliminate the possibility of contact with pathogens;
- conduct daily inspection of fish, timely remove and treat the sick.
It is interesting
- Despite the fact that the aquarium fish discus, whose content is quite difficult, love to live in packs, they still need a personal space. If these fish are not provided with a deep and large aquarium, they can get sick and die.
- Most modern aquarium discus were derived artificially.
- These fish create permanent pairs and belong to very caring parents who feed the first time fry with a special skin secret.